4 Next-Generation Media Mavericks

by The Daily Front Row

Here are the newly installed talents who are topping some of your favorite mastheads. We’re already obsessed!

1. Phillip Picardi
Editor in chief, Out

Phillip Picardi

Astrological sign Aries
Spiritual age Timeless, honey.
Hometown North Andover, MA
Alma mater + Graduation year NYU, Gallatin 2012
OUT’s mission is…To uplift and elevate the voices and visionaries of the LGBTQ community.
Reports to Nathan Coyle
Mentors Anna Wintour, Eva Chen, Mikki Halpin
Leadership style Hire the best, then allow them to be their best.
What initially drew you to working in media? Jennifer Aniston’s first magazine cover, of Vanity Fair, after her separation from Brad Pitt.

What’s your preferred social media platform? Instagram
Who are your favorite social media personalities? @biglilkim, @cher (on Twitter), @padmalakshmi (across all platforms), @bagsnob
Your front-row look consists of… I can’t stop wearing ankle boots with a bitchy heel — my favorite pair is Saint Laurent. I used to be a sneaker girl, but I think I’m officially converted.
What makes you jealous? People who can maintain vegetarianism, daily meditation, and daily exercise without falling off the wagon. So aspirational.
Any resolutions for 2019? Do something each day that makes someone feel really good

2. Kristin Koch
Executive director, Seventeen

Kristin Koch

Astrological sign Pisces
Spiritual age Hmmm… 17 for life?
Hometown Chicago
Alma matter Colgate University
Seventeen’s mission is
1) To empower young people to follow their dreams and change the world.
2) To help young people navigate the tricky high school, college, and young adult years.
3) To create an inclusive community where young people can have fun, fangirl, relax and escape the stress of life.
Reports to Kate Lewis and Brooke Siegel
Mentors Kate Lewis and Brooke Siegel; my former boss, Betsy Fast; my colleague and House Beautiful and Delish editorial director Joanna Saltz; the previous editors of Seventeen, who taught me so much, including Joey Bartolomeo, Michelle Tan, and Ann Shoket; and one of my first bosses, Cindi Leive.

Leadership style I am a big believer that people are everything, so I try to hire the best team and then I see it as my job to give them the tools they need to succeed. It’s really important to have a strong vision and be decisive. You may not always make the right decision, but I listen to my team and trust in their expertise, as well as my gut.
What drew you to working in media?
I loved magazines. I made my own as a little girl, and I always loved writing. I loved the idea of being able to continually learn and explore different topics, and to inspire and empower other women.

3. Jessica Pels
Editor in chief, Cosmopolitan

Jessica Pels

Astrological sign Virgo
Spiritual age 28
Hometown Atlanta
Alma mater + Graduation year NYU, Tisch School of the Arts, class of 2009 (but I graduated in December ’08)
What’s your mission for your brand, in 250 characters or less? To make it as fresh and fun as its readership is.
Boss The amazing Kate Lewis
Mentors See above! Plus Cindi Leive, my first boss in the biz, and Amy Astley and Anne Fulenwider—all amazing women with incredible visions I was lucky to learn from.

Leadership style I’m a big believer in hiring people who are independent, invested, and passionate. I think about my staff more as a group of collaborators with me than people who work for me. I listen to all voices on the team, and consider all opinions, but I feel confident in the call I make at the end of the day. I use data to drive a lot of my decision-making—not in a mindless numbers-chasing way, but in the sense that it gives me an acute understanding of my reader, and I can decisively move on what I know will resonate with her.
What initially drew you to working in media? Growing up, I loved movies, and I realized it’s because fiction can be a greater truth-teller than the real world is. It breeds empathy. That’s what drew me to story-telling overall.
What makes you jealous? Someone who seems like they got a full night’s sleep.

4. Lindsay Peoples Wagner
Editor in chief, Teen Vogue

Lindsay Peoples Wagner

Astrological sign Libra
Spiritual age 48
Hometown Brown Deer, WI
Alma mater + Graduation year Buena Vista University, 2012
What’s your vision/mission for your brand, in 250 characters or less? Authenticity and inclusivity in everything we do. Teen Vogue is where the next generation disrupts the conversation on everything from style to politics.
Boss Anna Wintour
Mentors All of my past bosses.

Leadership style Lead by the example of being a sane human being.
What initially drew you to working in media? The idea that I could impact culture.
What’s your preferred social media platform? Instagram
Favorites to follow on social media Frank Ocean and Lizzo
Your front-row look consists of… Something red.
What makes you jealous? When I’m at a fashion party, starving, and I see people eating appetizers, but I can’t find any.
Any resolutions for 2019? None. I’m blessed, and life is a journey.

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